Round Valley Elementary School held the 37th Annual Ken Baker Basketball Tournament Saturday, Dec. 1 at the Bishop High School’s Gus Klekas Gymnasium.
Competing against eight teams from Inyo and Mono counties, the Home Street Middle School boys team came away with the championship, followed by Mammoth Middle School in second and Big Pine taking third place.
Other teams included a second Home Street team, two teams from Round Valley, one from Lo-Inyo School and a team from Bridgeport.
All-Tournament team selections included Izaak Morgenstein and Lukas Di’Angelo from Round Valley, Home Street’s Shawn Brown and Topah Scherer, Christian Orrick from Mammoth, Dominic Santiago of Big Pine, Sawyer Beck from Bridgeport and David Martinez from Lo-Inyo.
The Tournament’s Most Valuable Player was Home Street’s Anthony Vega.
Round Valley’s annual tournament started in 1975 under then Superintendent/Principal/Coach Ken Baker with many Owens Valley residents participating over the ensuing 37 years. The Ken Baker Tournament is one of the longest-running junior high school tournaments in California.
The job of coordinating the event passed to the boys basketball coach and Round Valley Athletic Boosters when Baker took the job of Superintendent of Inyo County Office of Education.
In 1980, Bill Smith, Round Valley eighth-grade teacher took over for a year, then passed the baton to seventh- and eighth-grade teacher/Vice Principal Ralph White from 1981-87.
From 1988 to 1991, Round Valley parents, Howard Arcularius and Kevin Baetge ran the tournament.
Coaches and parents Randy and Lorna Blair held the job for 11 years, from 1992-2002, followed by Superintendent Barry Simpson and Bob Nalen from 2003-2006.
Howard Arcularius resumed his tournament directorship from 2007 until Amanda Marsh and Randee Arcularius took over as co-athletic directors for Round Valley School this year.